Monday, April 27, 2015

By small and simple things are great things brought to pass

This week has been pretty awesome! We got three new investigators this week, the most notable one so far is one of our investigator's fiance. She always avoided us when we were there until one day when we stopped by he wasn't there and when we started talking to her she decided to listen. We gave her a Book of Mormon and came back the next day to find out she had read 21 chapters (that's 20 more chapters than we told her to read, haha)!!! She says it all makes perfect sense to her and loves how the BoM answers all of her questions. She's on goal to be baptized may 16th if all goes well. Hopefully she'll help her fiance progress that much too.

One of the other new investigators is an older Catholic lady we found street contacting one day last week. We've also started going over to C's parents house to teach them and her younger brother. Her mom just wants to bash with us but her dad and brother seem a little more interested. We also went with C to the family history center yesterday and she's going to start trying to get her parents to come and start helping her out with it. Hopefully that will help get them hooked on the gospel! Family history work is so sweet. I got to get on and look up some cool stories about my ancestors while we were there too. 

That's all I can really think to tell y'all right now. I'm glad to hear about the great week y'all had too. I hope everything keeps going well. I've learned a lot recently that God doesn't settle for second best or just mediocre, so we shouldn't either. We need to keep on progressing every day and continue to work work work. So keep reading and praying and doing the simple things that will help you grow and learn. By small and simple things are great things brought to pass. 

Elder Carlson

Friday, April 17, 2015


It's been one insane week. Mainly towards the end of it was the crazy part. Earlier in the week was good. I got to go on exchanges with my trainer, Elder Christensen, who's my district leader. That was really fun. Just like old times in Seminole. 

We've also been able to do some great service this week too. We got to help paint a members house and then helped one of our investigator's friends move. We've also been able to meet with quite a few people this week as well, which is great. I'd say that's probably the biggest problem we have is trying to get in contact with people again. It seems like most people can only meet at the same time as everyone else can only meet at.

Saturday and Sunday was when it got crazy. I'm happy to say, though, that on Saturday J and C got baptized!!! It went great. They invited a lot of family and so there was a lot more non-members than members there. One of the missionaries who taught them in Plainview was at the temple and got to see them after the baptism, which was cool. 

Later we found out an investigator's brother died so we couldn't go see her. Then we got a text from C telling us that her husband had appendicitis and was in the hospital for surgery. We went up there, getting lost a couple times going through Tech campus, but weren't able to see him.  Everything went well fortunately, but he won't be able to work or drive or anything for at least a week, which will be rough for them since they need the money from him working and they have trouble finding regular babysitters for their kids so C can work. 

Sunday we got a request from the zone leaders to go help out another set of missionaries in our zone. One of them was up sick all night and so couldn't go to church but was supposed to give a talk so I went with his companion to their sacrament meeting so he could give the talk instead. After that we went to our ward where I got to confirm J and C!  It was a little nerve wracking at first but it went great. After church we got to see one of our prior investigators.  He's doing a ton better! He has a job, is able to pay his own rent, goes to church, and looks like a completely new person! 

One thing I learned this week is how dumb it is to speed. God never made or told us to make time. We created time on our own and we tend to try to speed things up because of it. God intended us to slow down and appreciate what God's given us and not be going too fast and missing everything we could enjoy around us. She said it a lot more eloquently, but realizing that has helped me resist the urge to speed as I drive and "Elder Tiwi" yells at me a lot less now, haha. I love y'all!

-Elder Carlson

Monday, April 6, 2015

General Conference was awesome!

It's been a long week, but a really good one. On Tuesday we got to go clear out to the east side of Lubbock and do some service at the African American Museum. It was really fun. Another sweet thing we did this week is we got Elder Hastings to try some new things! We bribed him that he could dump a gallon of ice cold water on his companion Elder Nelson's head for every new thing he tried. He tried an orange, grapefruit, asparagus, beet, and gum (the gum took some persuading. We settled for it was worth 3 gallons plus a gallon for every min he chewed it). In the end, Nelson will get 9 gallons dumped on him, haha! 

Wednesday we had a zone conference, which I was dreading. We all had to bring our cars because they installed the "black box" or "Elder Tiwi" into our cars. Basically it monitors our speed, seat belt wearing, and aggressiveness of driving. I've already been yelled at by it a couple times... The conference was really good, though. Pres. Heap talked about how there's really three laws we can obey to get to one of the three kingdoms of glory (for ex: cel. law means don't get angry, ter. law means don't kill, and tel. law means kill whoever). I can't explain it as well as he did, but basically we are told everything God wants us to do and we have the ability to use our agency to choose the law we want to follow and so where we want to go. 

And of course, general conference was awesome! Saturday morning we got to go to an activity our ward had. We helped hide Easter eggs and had breakfast then watched conference with everybody at our church building on 114th st. For the rest of the sessions of conf we watched at the stake center (on Frankford Ave), except for the priesthood session we went to a members house because the elders quorum put on a bbq for it. I bet Jake is pumped for the temple in Thailand, huh? I freaked out when I heard them announce that, haha. 

I have learned so much about agency and it's importance in God's plan as well as opposition this week. One of my favorite talks was probably Pres Eyring's in the priesthood session. He talked about how we need to be able to be in tune enough with the spirit that we know what Christ would say in every situation rather than just when we need it like deciding to go on a mission or such. Also, Elder Holland's talk had my palms sweating the entire time, haha! I love you all and hope this week is splendid for y'all.

- Elder Carlson

"Because He Lives"

It's been a good week, but we'll see if I remember what happened, haha. We got three new investigators this week. One of them we met quite a while ago while we were leaving a lesson with our former investigator. He was super surprised we remembered his name the next time we saw him and we gave him a pamphlet. We saw him again quite a bit later and he loved the pamphlet and wanted us to stop by sometime. We were finally able to meet with him this week and he's pretty awesome. Another one we had seen a couple times but just finally got to teach him something as well.

The last one is this lady who was a referral from Church headquarters. We finally got to meet with her and she seemed super solid and interested, but just today we got a call from her saying not to come by to our appointment because she's not interested. I hope she hasn't been anti-ed. I've gotten more drop calls/texts in this area than anywhere else.

Also, yesterday we went to a dinner appointment with a member family and the other elders. I'm not sure if I've told you much about Elder Hastings, but he is extremely picky in everything he eats. To show you how much so, the only fruit he's ever eaten are apples, bananas, and grapes. And the only vegetables are carrots and broccoli. Anyway, so at our dinner appointment we tried to convince him to eat a strawberry. It took us so long to convince/bribe him to eat it! Hastings is hilarious. 

Anyway, have y'all seen the new initiative the Church put out? It's called "Because He Lives". If you haven't go to . It'll be going year round this time, but starting around Easter time because that's when He was resurrected. It's great to have these holidays to focus on Christ and what He has done for us. I hope we can all feel of the power of the Atonement and help others to learn to feel it for themselves. It's such a blessing to be able to know Him and have the joy of knowing His restored gospel. I love and miss you all.

- Elder Carlson